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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 8/14/13

Who's a Psychopath? Walt on Breaking Bad? Obama? Politicians? Corporate Execs?

Wired magazine has a new article up on its website; Test case: is Breaking Bad's Mr White a psycho?  Walter White is the former chemistry teacher who turned Meth "cook" and dealer, and in the process, murderer. The Wired story looks at Walt's evolution over five seasons and finds that indeed, Mr. White does become a psychopath, according to the criteria from psychologist Robert Hare's Psychopathy Checklist. Dr. Hare is  considered the world's expert on Psychopaths. 

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I thought I'd take the same approach and apply it to Barack Obama AND to politicians in general and corporate execs. Keep in mind that lower-functioning psychopaths get caught and go to jail. The highest-functioning ones often reach the highest places of power. Thom Hartmann first put the idea in my head that it takes a sociopath to run a fortune 1000 corporation. More recently, I interviewed a psychopath who wrote the book, Confessions of a Sociopath. I asked her about people she thought might be a sociopath and she mentioned Obama.  I had my doubts, but the Wired article gave a way to apply the question to Obama and the other groups. 

Wired used a checklist created by Dr. Robert Hare, author Snakes In Suits and Without Conscience. There are 20 items. If a person scores 18 or over, he or she fits the profile of a psychopath. Dr. Hare licenses the assessment tool for formal use to psychologists, prisons, parole boards. It is the curse of death, or extended time in jail if a person up for parole is assessed as a psychopath using the Hare assessment tool. The exercise I am engaging is not professional by any means. It's a rough attempt to think about leaders using Dr. Hare's model. 

Here's how the questions are scored. 

 0 = no; 1 = maybe; 2 = yes. The highest possible score on the screening version of the full Psychopathy Checklist is 24. The average non-criminal non-psychopath receives a score between 0 and 4. A criminal psychopath is defined as anyone with a score of 18 or more. 

To see the list, with descriptions of each of the items, click here.

I'm marking my score for  for each group displayed as follows:

Obama/Politicians/Corporate Execs

Hare's Checklist







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Rob Kall Social Media Pages: Facebook Page       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Rob Kall is an award winning journalist, inventor, software architect, connector and visionary. His work and his writing have been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, ABC, the HuffingtonPost, Success, Discover and other media. 

Check out his platform at

He is the author of The Bottom-up Revolution; Mastering the Emerging World of Connectivity

He's given talks and workshops to Fortune 500 execs and national medical and psychological organizations, and pioneered first-of-their-kind conferences in Positive Psychology, Brain Science and Story. He hosts some of the world's smartest, most interesting and powerful people on his Bottom Up Radio Show, and founded and publishes one of the top Google- ranked progressive news and opinion sites,

more detailed bio: 

Rob Kall has spent his adult life as an awakener and empowerer-- first in the field of biofeedback, inventing products, developing software and a music recording label, MuPsych, within the company he founded in 1978-- Futurehealth, and founding, organizing and running 3 conferences: Winter Brain, on Neurofeedback and consciousness, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology (a pioneer in the field of Positive Psychology, first presenting workshops on it in 1985) and Storycon Summit Meeting on the Art Science and Application of Story-- each the first of their kind.  Then, when he found the process of raising people's consciousness and empowering them to take more control of their lives  one person at a time was too slow, he founded which has been the top search result on Google for the terms liberal news and progressive opinion for several years. Rob began his Bottom-up Radio show, broadcast on WNJC 1360 AM to Metro Philly, also available on iTunes, covering the transition of our culture, business and world from predominantly Top-down (hierarchical, centralized, authoritarian, patriarchal, big)  to bottom-up (egalitarian, local, interdependent, grassroots, archetypal feminine and small.) Recent long-term projects include a book, Bottom-up-- The Connection Revolution, debillionairizing the planet (more...)

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